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Investment Law & Policy

IISD works with governments, intergovernmental institutions, and civil society to develop innovative legal and policy tools that ensure international investments drive sustainable development.

Sustainable development is an investment issue. International investment is needed to mitigate climate change, alleviate poverty, create jobs and opportunities, increase climate resilience, and develop crucial infrastructure. Investment holds the key to a more fair and sustainable world economy.

IISD's global team of investment experts collaborates with governments, international institutions, academics, and civil society to develop legal and policy tools that link investment to sustainable social, economic, and environmental outcomes.

We examine how to improve the institutions, rules, and practices that govern international investment flows and publish independent and thought-provoking research. IISD' flagship journal, Investment Treaty News, is a must-read for every investment policy-maker, bringing new analysis and ideas to a global readership.

Taking our expertise into the real world, we work with decision-makers on every continent across multilateral, regional, national, and local levels, proposing practical alternatives to some of the most burning issues within international investment.

We provide workshops, training, and advisory services to government officials and civil society actors from developing countries from Africa and Asia to Latin America and the Caribbean. Every year, IISD hosts the Investment Policy Foruma unique event that brings together investment officials from developing countries across the world and has created a truly global network for change.

IISD's team of experts is leading the way in reforming how disputes are settled under investment treatiesa process known as investorstate dispute settlement (ISDS)to ensure a global order where local and indigenous communities, climate laws and policies, and our nature all are getting adequate protection against vested interests.

To this end, we are a member of the Task Force for the Agreement Establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Investment Protocol, the United Nations Conference on International Trade Law process for ISDS reform (the so-called UNCITRAL Working Group III), and we have an instrumental role on reform of the Energy Charter Treatywhere we are working for the removal of one of the key remaining obstacles to the green energy transition and advancing sustainable legal solutions.

In addition, IISD's Investment team is a member of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development Multi-Stakeholder Platform on International Investment Agreement Reform, the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law and International Chamber of Commerce’s Working Group on modernizing international investment contracts, and the World Investment for Development Alliance, a global platform dedicated to promoting investment for sustainable development.